Assam violence intensifies; death toll reaches 32
Kokrajhar: Ethnic violence on Tuesday escalated in more areas of western Assam with 11 fresh casualties in clashes and police firing, forcing the Centre to rush 1,500 more paramilitary personnel to control the unrest that has claimed 32 lives so far.
A concerned Prime Minister Manmohan Singh called up Chief Minister Tarun Gogoi and asked him to do "everything possible" to control the violence while promising Centre`s full cooperation.
"Four persons were killed in police firing this morning when they were indulging in violence in Rampur and Chaparkata areas of Kokrajhar," IGP, (BTAD), SN Singh told PTI.
Seven more bodies were recovered in Kokrajhar and Chirang districts.
As new areas came under the grip of the ongoing clashes that began last week between illegal immigrants and Bodos, the state government sounded alert in Sonitpur, Baska, Kamrup (rural) and Darrang districts, official sources said.
The Prime Minister spoke to Gogoi and took stock of the situation. UPA chairperson Sonia Gandhi and Union Home Minister P Chidamabaram also called up the chief minister.
"The Prime Minister has directed him to do everything possible to control the situation and for relief and rehabilitation of the affected," a PMO spokesperson said.
Union Home Secretary R K Singh told reporters in Delhi that another 1,500 personnel of paramilitary forces were rushed today.
According to Chirang SP Kumar Sanjiv Krishna, sporadic incidents of violence were reported from remote areas.
Nearly one lakh people have been rendered homeless in Kokrajhar, Chirang, Dhubri, Bongaigaon, Udalguri and Sonitpur and most them are sheltered in relief camps.
Gogoi held a late night meeting of cabinet and alleged that the incident was a "part of political conspiracy" to malign his government.
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